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senator from a red state, a decorated and wounded combat veteran nominated to lead the pentagon while we are at war. republicans have never before felt the need to filibuster a cabinet member in the history of the country but apparently now this is the time and this is the guy worth waiting 224 years to spring it on. it has never happened before, but why not now? heck. the white house is not pleased. "today's action runs against both the majority will of the senate and our nation's interest. this waste of time is not without consequence. we have 66,000 men and women deployed in afghanistan, and we need our new secretary of defense to be a part of significant decisions about how we bring that war to a responsible end. next week in brussels, the united states will meet with our allies to talk about the transition in afghanistan at the nato defense ministerial, and our next secretary of defense should be there. for the sake of national security, it's time to stop playing politics with our department of defense and to move beyond the distractions and delay. allow this war hero an up or down
? the pentagon. >> we're only a few weeks away from this. >> it doesn't make any political sense. >> it would be brutal for everybody. >> devastating effects on the economy. >> pushes us into a second recession, something so terrible -- >> all right. settle down. >> they recognize that the sequester is a bad idea. >> i don't like the sequester. >> we see the republicans playing games. >> this is the wrong time for sequestration. >> both sides are sort of okay with it. >> doing nothing is easier than doing something. >> republicans say cuts but no taxes. >> these cuts cost job. >> they don't even want to talk about it. >> who are the monsters who came up with the sequestration idea? >> guess what, they all support it. congress put it into place to force themselves to agree. >> dumbest blame game in washington. >>> it's time for another round of republican would you rather. we'll call this the sequester edition. today's question, would you rather go up against al qaeda or grover norquist? republican senator lindsey graham said al qaeda would love the defense cuts in the sequester to take effect
will oppose hagel no matter what. >> i believe he's the wrong person to lead the pentagon at this perilous and consequential time. >> tea party senator ted cruz tried to gin up an old conservative bogeyman. >> i'd like to draw your attention to an interview you did in 2009 with al jazeera. >> but here's the real reason. these guys don't want chuck hagel in the defense department. this is the bomb bomb iran crowd. you see, mccain and graham have led the charge for possible war against the iranians as well as syria. chuck hagel sees war as an absolute last resort. that's why president obama picked him. the two share similar views in philosophy as the obama administration attempts to define the role of the united states in the transition to a post-superpower world. their philosophy is this. the united states must get out of these massive land wars, iraq and afghanistan, and if possible avoid future large-scale war. despite all of the posturing and starcraft, hagel's nomination, well, is not in jeopardy. not one senator who previously voiced support for hagel has changed his or her mind. i thi
home to the pentagon, the largest navy base in norfolk, it's a hub for defense contractors, such as aircraft carrier builders, nondefense budget cuts would eliminate another 71,000-plus jobs in virginia. so, the impact over 200,000 jobs, second only to california. you can't want this automatic spending cut to go forward. >> you know, clearly, this is not, david, the best way to go about trying to control spending, and we have demonstrated in the house for two separate occasions. one of the bills that we put across the floor that passed i was a sponsor of for exactly that reason. these are indiscriminate cuts. we can do a lot better. and what i hope to be able to hear from the president in the state of the union is he wants to join us in trying to effect much smarter cuts in spending so we don't have to have -- >> but that's what he's saying. >> so we don't have to have the impact that you discussed. >> why not work with him on some short-term measure that he's talking about to delay this, try to find a different way to go about these cuts? >> the problem is, david, every ti
of the pentagon that i'm willing to do this. we are never again going to get to cut the pentagon back. the pentagon hasn't had any significant cuts for 30 years. >> josh green, is that the political equivalent of a liger, a lion and tiger combined to make an animal we have never seen before. rand paul and howard dean agreeing that the sequester should go through because, hey, defense -- >> hadn't occurred to me in quite those terms, but, yes, i suppose it could be a liger. >> there have always been contingent of liberal democrats that have wanted to go after the pentagon because its budget has grown enormously since 9/11. what you haven't had is a kind of republican analog. there have been a few people here, walter jones, congressman in north carolina, ron paul, in fact, was a big advocate of this, but only in the last couple of years, and really only in the last 18 months since the sequester cuts have loomed have you seen this tension between small government anti-tax republicans and pro-defense republicans. it's really a sort of tug-of-war between their two interests. traditionally
or not to admit gays to the rankings. >>> on the heels of the boy scouts decision, the pentagon is announcing a policy shift for guy service members and partners. leon panetta expected to extend benefits to partners of personnel. it remains doubtful that medical, down theal and housing allowances are offered under the new proposal. an extension of those benefits require the repeal of the 1996 defense of marriage act. >>> here's a first look this morning at your morning dish of scrambled politics. >>> the president should be used to cameras snapping away at him in the white house. but he read a statement about the economic plan he reacted to the distraction. >> what's up, cameraman? come on, guys. they're breaking my flow all the time. >> the white house released a photo yesterday of the president working with aides on a speech. coincidentally, the chief speechwriter seen on the right is leaving the white house. he's going to be taking his writing skills to hollywood. >>> a new action figure of president obama is on sale showing him with a shotgun. perfect for skeet shooting. >>> dick morris l
with us. nbc's chief correspondent. what are you hearing at the pentagon. >> officials knew this was coming although they didn't know the exact timing. this one has set off alarm bells, particularly because of the size of the blast. we're not relying on north korea claims here. south korea's seismic readings on the blast said it was somewhere about 6 or 7 kilotons, which could make it anywhere from 3 to 6 times more powerful than any previous weapon they set off before. north korea did claim they did this with a much smaller warhead, which would indicate they could be making progress miniaturizing a missile that could be launched at the united states. that's north korea and nobody is taking that seriously at this point and quite frankly, that's impossible to prove. within minutes, it seemed, after the blast was reported, the white house responded and president obama called it a highly provocative act that undermines regional stability and threatens ultimately u.s. national security. the president said it demands swift and credible action by the international community. that'
's a move that plays politics with the pentagon. senate republicans are blocking at least temporarily the nomination of chuck ha goal to be secretary of defense. first time that a defense secretary nominee has needed to clear 60 votes. it will further strain partisan. >> my expectation and my hope is that chuck ha goal who richly deserves to get a vote on the floor on the gnat, will be con first as our defense secretary. this kind of politics, it's unfortunate, intrudes when i'm still presiding over a war in afghanistan. >> there are still questions outstanding. i believe that senators have the right to have those questions answered. >> some senators said they want to examine information regarding the u.s. consulate attack in benghazi. majority harry reid plans to bring it up at the end of the month. >>> president obama again defended his administration's use of drones in the wear on terror. he did admit that the public should know about how the program works. >> what i think is absolutely true is that it's not sufficient for citizens to just take my word for it that we're doing the r
are desperate to solve this problem. >> if you had a choice of saving the pentagon or playing golf with tiger, what would you do? >> i'd play golf with tiger. but that's two guys talking here. i don't begrudge the president two days off. he's earned that. >> he needs it. >> and the congress isn't there for nine days either. my point s neither side seems to view this as urgently as the american public. >> oh, no. i wasn't doing that as a subtle dig. i would golf with tiger and figure out a way to save the pentagon. >> maybe while you're golfing with tiger. maybe tiger had some ideas. i don't know. >> long time between holes on that course. >> good things happen when presidents are golfing with famous people. back in 1997 bill clinton got a phone call while he was golfing with michael jordan in vegas. he got the horrible news that -- true stroory. i get to say this because i'm a former politician. he got the news that if he did nothing, the budget was going to balance itself alone without any of his help. so he quit, rushed to the airport and came back saying, we have to do something fast so i
? >> at the pentagon. >> this is the first time hearing of this. when did this happen? did they make this decision on the cruise ship? >> no. no, they didn't. it actually happened in washington. >> really? that's fascinating. >> which is its own permanent port-a-potty. >> okay. mika, for those of us that were just sitting there looking at a cruise ship for 24 hours instead of following the real news, why don't you catch us up with what actually happened yesterday in the news. >> republicans blocked a vote yesterday that would have ended the debate and allowed for a final decision one way or another. democrats fell just shy of the votes needed to advance the process. something president obama chalked up to partisan politics. >> there's nothing in the constitution that says that somebody should get 60 votes. there are only a handful of instances in which there's been any kind of filibuster of anybody for a cabinet position in our history. and what seems to be happening -- and this has been growing over time -- is the republican minority in the senate seem to think that the rule now is that you have
them to be moved from the cia back to the pentagon. but the fact is that there has been something like a 700% increase in the use of drones under president obama as compared to george w. bush. >> and andrea, as you know, from your sources at the agency and i know from my sources not only from the agency but in the entire intelligence community when barack obama came into office, they specifically said, they wanted to ramp up drone operations. and they wanted there to be a side-by-side comparison of how many strikes bush did versus how many strikes they did. for brennan to say that he wants to pull back on drone strikes, that's just -- that's just not accurate. and that's not what's been happening since january 20th, 2009. you can go back. and when the history is written, you will go back to january 20th, 2009, and see a very deliberate -- >> executive orders. >> executive orders. and again, i think most americans probably support this policy. so it's not like i'm talking about anything that's going to be scandalous. most people will support the president doing this. but it obviously ca
former top pentagon official, and next, how close could that giant asteroid come to earth? just a little over an hour from now? look outside. this is "andrea mitchell reports" on only on msnbc. [ male announcer ] why is kellogg's crunchy nut so delicious? because every flake is double-toasted... splashed with sweet honey... and covered in rich double-roasted peanuts. mmm. [ hero ] yummy. [ male announcer ] kellogg's crunchy nut. it's super delicious! [ male announcer ] kellogg's crunchy nut. ( ♪ ) for those nights when it's more than a bad dream, be ready. for the days when you get a sudden call from the school, be ready. for the times you need to double-check the temperature on the thermometer, be ready. when you have children's motrin on hand, you're ready. for high fever, nothing works faster or lasts longer than children's motrin. be ready with children's motrin. this single scoop of gain gives more freshness than a whole box of this other stuff... and that much freshness is gonna take some getting used to... [ sniffing ] ahh. mmm! [ male announcer ] yep, it's amazing what a single
to do with any pending issues before the pentagon. it has to do with he's been mean to president bush. he's been mean to john mccain. this process has said more about republicans than quite franklin it has said about chuck -- >> what about this issue of him -- is he going to be in charge of the pentagon? >> i think that is going to be the test for chuck hagel when he is sworn in fairly quickly and fairly soon as the next defense secretary. and i think there's no doubt he's going to go into that building and he'll take strong command of it. and that's what is going to be remembered. >> that is the toughest job in washington for the best and most qualified person and this process has weakened him, and his personality is probably not suited for this job. i can assure you of one thing. robert gibbs is going to be very happy he's not standing at that press podium the first time chuck hagel opines about the president's foreign policy and their disagreements on it. >> i can tell you there were a lot of reporters that were answering to be on this trip to brussels. >> the reasons that are bein
at capitol hill, art tea talking about the impact of the budget cuts on the pentagon. in the senate they are expected to finally clear the way for confirmation vote to chuck hagel who will inherit this budget mess. janet napolitano, you see her on the right there, also speaking live at the brookings institution. and then just moments ago, we heard from a fired-up john boehner who blames the stalemate on the president and the senate. >> we have moved a bill in the house twice. we should not have a move a third bill before the senate gets off their ass and begins to do something. >> i'm joined by military analyst jack jacobs. good to see you. >> good morning. >> if lawmakers can't make this march 1st deadline, $43 billion or 8% will be slushed from the pentagon budget. they have used words like devastating, dire. are they right? how significant would this be? >> very serious indeed. these are across the board cuts. i mean, there's no intelligence or intelligent decisions made on what is going to be cut. so in addition to fact -- and there's plenty of fact -- you are going to cut ammun
to stall the nomination of chuck hagel for the pentagon. those stories straight ahead. >>> first, let's begin with rap, rock, r and b and pop all colliding for the 55th annual grammy awards. a good night for veterans like adele and jay-z. the evening began for the new artists, fun, gotyea and black keys. they got the coveted album of the year. juxtapositional star appearance, honoring bob marley and lee von helms. potential wardrobe malfunctions. the producers put out a memo and told them to avoid see through clothing and song type costumes. we'll show you which stars got the memo and which ones did not in the cooler. >>> in other news, president obama will deliver his state of the union tomorrow night. he's expected to push for more investment in infrastructure and clean energy. he'll zero in on the issue of the middle class advocating for what he described last week as a, quote, economy that works for everybody. tomorrow's speech is also going to focus on immigration, climate change and gun violence. big themes from the president's inaugural address last month. then on wednesday the
, had any onpanetta strongly defended the pentagon's response to the benghazi attack that left ambassador chris stevens and three other americans dead. panetta told lawmakers there just wasn't enough time to get u.s. forces or attack aircraft to the scene. >>> today president obama will speak at a military farewell service for panetta. >>> michelle obama plans to travel to chicago to attend tomorrow's funeral for 15-year-old hidea pendleton, an honor student and band major ret who participated in the inauguration festivities about a week before her death. hidea was the victim of random gun violence last week, fatally shot about a mile from the obamas' chicago-area home. no arrests have been made. >>> the big story of the day, that potentially historic blizzard bearing down on the northeast. if weather channel meteorologist jim cantore shows up in your town, that's got to be bad news. jim is live in boston for us this morning. what's the latest there? >> just to let you know how bad i think this one's going to be, i brought a yardstick. there's only been one time i've ever broug
and the pentagon. 800,000 civilian employees have been told by the defense department that they will likely be placed on unpaid leave. with the house and senate still in recess, a number of democrats are calling for congress to reconvene to deal with this mess. secretary of state john kerry, meanwhi meanwhile, is reminding his former colleagues that actions here at home do have global implications. take a listen. >> it is often said that we cannot be strong at home if we're not strong in the world. but in these days of a looming budget sequester that everyone actually wants to avoid, or most, we can't be strong in the world unless we are strong at home. my credibility is a diplomat, working to help other countries create order is strongest when america, at last, puts its own fiscal house in order. and that has to be now. let's reach a responsible agreement that prevents these senseless consults. let's not lose this opportunity because of politics. >> you know, mike barnicle, politics is such a cruel, cruel game. seriously. there's one guy that gets to the top of the heap. everybody else is
're going to cut pretty significantly from the pentagon's budget. your move, mr. president. >> he wants revenues to go up again and john boehner's response is, we just did that. >> that's the thing. we always heard, you guys raise taxes, cut defense spending and then we will come back with a compromise on spending cuts. but, no, we raise taxes, we come forward with pentagon cuts and the president comes back with, we want to tax more americans. let's raise taxes again. >> you wonder where this ends now then, right, because if the president's not going to go anywhere without more revenue, where does this take us? we have the plan in place that was supposed to do both of those things. we're at that point on friday and we will hit it and neither side is going to get to it. what's the end game here. >> how do you think this is goin going? >> it's going terribly. >> republicans always lose these budget battles. i get a sense for the first time the president is overplaying his hand. talking about fear and loathing, locusts ascending from the heavens, now talking about more tax cuts, your dog w
have trouble managing the pentagon and bring in any reforms he might want to do. it sets up the idea, is this going to be business as usual? it is an unprecedented move to filibuster a defense nominee in the area of national security. first time it's ever happened. but could this be the norm? >> let's talk about senator john mccain who heightened a few issues here the republicans have with chuck hagel. >> to be honest with you, it goes back to, there's a lot of ill-will towards senator hagel because when he was a republican, he attacked president bush mercilessly, at one point said he was the worst president since herbert hoover, said that the surge was the worst blunder since the vietnam war, which is nonsense. and was very anti-his own party and people. people don't forget that. you can disagree but if you're disagreeable, people don't forget that. >> what do you think is the gop's strategy here and is there a sense at all that they might be creating more bad p.r. for the party because hagel appears to be on his way to being confirmed anyway? you heard david saying that they're jus
rumsfeld trying to defend the pentagon. like don't cut a single thing, but i'm going to go out, i'm going to keep talking about rich americans. i'm going to keep talking about corporations. i'm going to play to my base instead of talking -- telling middle-class americans they're going to have to make some sacrifices. along with the rich. it's that mika, it's a permanent campaign. and i guess if this is how he wants to run things, he's president of the united states, good luck over the next 3 1/2 years. >> i don't understand why loopholes are even an argument, first of all, why he has to go this far. why he has to keep talking about it. >> hold on a second. >> i know. >> we all agree that these loopholes need to be closed. >> well, let's do it. why is it so hard? >> i've been talking about supporting warren buffett's idea. >> why are we still talking about it? >> because the president only uses it to demagogue in a permanent campaign. he never talks about the other side of it. he always says oh, it's the rich. >> that would be loopholes. >> don't tax you, don't tax me, tax the rich guy beh
the pentagon, his answer was simple. no. but i kept asking. i am persistent. that's how michelle married me. i just kept at it, and it is a testament to leon's patriotism, to his sense of duty that he agreed to serve on this one last tour. and perhaps it was the memory during world war ii of his parents opening up their homes to gis headed for the pacific. perhaps it was because leon served himself as a young lieutenant in the army. perhaps it was the experience of watching his youngest son deploy to afghanistan. what we do know is this, as our nation's 23rd secretary of defense, every action leon panetta has taken, every decision that he has made, has been with one goal in mind -- taking care of our sons and our daughters in uniform and keeping america safe. and just think of the progress under his watch. because we ended the war in iraq and are winding down the war in afghanistan, our troops are coming home, and next year our war in afghanistan will come to an end. we've put the core of al qaeda on the path to defeat, and we've been relentless against its affiliates. because we have a sacred
's districts or you see, you know, economic fall-out from these huge cuts in the pentagon which both parties have said they want to avoid, you might see republicans open to revenue. there are republicans on the record saying that they would look at revenue to block these cuts, the sequester. john mccain said that the other day. republicans to exact a political victory here need to get spending cuts. i mean, they settled for a deal in the fiscal cliff that was not good for party leaders. they are going to hold very, very tight on that, and, by the way, after the sequester -- >> do you think that tea party response is almost sort of covering their bases there? i mean, the tea partiers get to say we had a strong message and held tight to our values. you know, these moderates went and made deals with the president. we're not to blame. if you -- in effect trying to sort of head off primary challenge if one is going to come up in 2014. >> that's the question. ran paul is playing a tough game. he has a personal history with mcconnell, who supported, you know, his challenger down there originally, a
the pentagon is suggesting there will be 700,000 civilian layoffs. real people are being effected now, but everyone expects this will kick in in nine days and then, i guess, the white house thinks they'll negotiate the continuing resolution and some sort of an agreement will occur magically before the end of march. republicans still say they won't buy into any taxes. so we haven't bridged any of these gaps. >> we haven't, andrea. look, i know the president came out and gave a statement yesterday sort of expressing his desire for a deal, but i think this is really about -- and republicans are doing this too -- about positioning for march 2nd and beyond. no one expects a congress, who isn't even here this week, they are taking the president's week off, fine with me if i had that week off. they are taking this week off. next week they are back. congress doesn't get big budget deals done in eight days' time, seven days' time. the political positioning to see who has the upper hand in the negotiations that, in theory, will go on once we past march 1st and the cuts, as you point out which w
connell asked the pentagon to get to the bottom of what he called a very troubling story. i'm writing on behalf of a constituent who has contacted me regarding guantanamo bay prisoners receiving post-9/11 gi bill benefits. the constituent wrote to mcconnell about this disturbing information. after reading an article on the duffel blog. it turns out that duffel blog reports on all kinds of stuff, like syria hosting iraq war reenactors. in other words, it's satire, folks. and now mcconnell's office is defending its actions? they put out a statement saying "senator mcconnell's office is hyper vigilant about finding answers to the questions raised by his constituents." how do you make that up, eric? >> that's a ridiculous statement from senator mcconnell's office. yes, senate offices, house office, they get a lot of request for information. but they do have the internet in those offices. they can -- the staff can google things, and they can look to see if they're true or not. i just can't imagine any senate staffer looking at that story and, you know, with what that constituent was requesting think
of brussels today was a very terse statement from the pentagon spokesman. it was kind of strange. he was essentially clarifying, hey, whatever you heard from the germans earlier today, that was not true. this is the statement. "the reports that the u.s. told allies that we are considering 8,000 to 12,000 u.s. troops after 2014 are not correct. a range of 8,000 to 12,000 troops was discussed, but it was discussed as the possible size of the overall nato mission, not the u.s. contribution." ah, important clarification. so the defense minister from germany had apparently told reporters that 8 to 12,000 troops was how many troops america was going to keep in afghanistan. everybody thought that was very big news since that's not what we heard hear at home at all. maybe that is how the german guy understood it, but it is apparently not the way that leon panetta meant it. that was the headline out of brussels today. those troops, that's nato combined, that's not just us. that was the headline. the other news of course was that representing the united states and apparently confusing the germ
of the stick when it comes to the looming spending cuts that are set to hit march 1st? pentagon controller -- comptroller, robert hail is taking it in stride. he told the washington post, when i walk down the hall, people still wave, but with fewer fingers. isn't he nice? up next, republican governor reversing course and embrace the obama care plan. the latest to do so was one of obama care's biggest critics. the sweetheart down in -- i say that sarcastically, and the man that nobody likes. i told him, sure. can't hurt, right? then i heard this news about a multivitamin study looking at long-term health benefits for men over 50. the one they used in that study... centrum silver. that's what i take. my doctor! he knows his stuff. [ male announcer ] centrum. the most recommended. most preferred. most studied. centrum, always your most complete. how did i know? well, i didn't really. see, i figured low testosterone would decrease my sex drive... but when i started losing energy and became moody... that's when i had an honest conversation with my doctor. we discussed all the symptoms... then h
. >>> let me finish tonight with the stalking of senator hagel. those who don't want this man as pentagon chief will stop at nothing. they're out there beating the bushes right now for anything that will slow the process of his confirmation, anything that will give them more time to find something they can build enough on to bring the man down. question. who are they trying to bring down? is it president obama's pick for secretary of defense? or is it the man the american people have chosen? is it about a confirmation or a desperate push to undermine the president's second term? listen to those attacking senator hagel, and you hear the yelps of pain this motley crew of neocons and right-wingers from the sun belt feel even though from the american people's choice of last november. what they hate, despise really, is the fact now in the history books that the american people in great numbers reject their war-like jingoistic notions of what america stands for. their problem is not with obama's choice for a cabinet appointment. their problem is with america's choice of who it
to some of the employees, civilian employees of the pentagon and some other places. the 85 billion in cuts is through the rest of the fiscal year through september 30th and we're not even talking a full year. it's 50/50 between the defense cuts and the discretionary am doestic spending cuts and the warnings that we're hearing from experts on national security are very severe and vehement. they have told us that this will be a very significant damage. >> let's put the list up here, alex. the white house put out this fact sheet yesterday on the most damaging effects of the cuts that are supposed to go into effect march 1st. 17,000 education jobs at risk. 70,000 kids being kicked off head start. nearly 400,000 mentally ill patients not receiving health care and small business loan guarantees being cut up to $540 million, roughly. the white house did not mention the massive military cuts. what was the strategy there? >> well, look. i think that for the white house, the strategy here is to emphasize that basically every american would be impacted in some way. if you emphasize defense cuts and i
department after getting in a little bit of hot water after saying the pentagon was treating manning unfairly. three years later, what are your thoughts on him now? >> for a caveat, the formal trial has not begun, but there is a legal proceeding under way, you know, regarding the charges and a potential, you know, plea-bargain. so this is a very open and transparent legal process, so it's not as if he's being held without charge. that said, obviously, two years ago i was concerned that it was punitive confinement at quantico. eventually the army moved him to ft. leavenworth, and he received more suitable pretrial confinement which is consistent with, you know, our norps both in the military and civilian justice system. he stands accused of very serious crimes, and the legal case will get under way late they are spring. >> p.j. crowley, always a pleasure. thanks. >> all right, alex. >> still ahead, manti te'o meets the press. how did he handle the barrage of questions about that infamous hoax? ♪ [ male announcer ] were you more interesting in your twenties, or now? when you were starting out
the sequester in a hurry, then yes, it's a real problem because it doesn't let the pentagon begin to plan and distribute, if you will, the cuts. but at the end of the day, whether it's defense spending, education spending, health spending, what always matters more than how much you spend is how you spend it. and so i'm not, at the end of the day, all that worried about how much we spend, whether it's on defense or anything else. you just want to have the time to make some intelligent cuts rather than have to make them literally in a matter of days which would probably mean that readiness more than anything else would be cut out of the defense department account. and that's probably the one thing you don't want cut out of it. >> sam stein, you're close and yet so far away over there at the jump seat. what are the odds that the sequester actually takes place? we know the president's proposed something to push them back a while. are we going to see these kind of cuts, the ones that were outlined in the sequester proposal? >> i think the odds are pretty high, to be hone. i don't think there's
to oppose his nominees for top cabinet slots at the pentagon and cia. republican senator lindsey graham threatened to hold up those picks until the white house delivers more information about the attacks in benghazi. >> i don't think we should allow brennan to go forward for the cia directorship, hagel to be confirmed as secretary of defense until the white house gives us an accounting, did the president ever pick up the phone and call anyone in the libyan government to help these folks? what did the president do? yes, i'm going to ask my colleagues just like they did with john bolton, joe biden said, no confirmation without information. no confirmation without information. >> you are saying that you are going to block the nominations -- you're going to block them from coming to a vote until you get an answer? >> yes. >> now, john mccain has already think that he doesn't think republicans ought to filibuster this. what will you do? you're just going to put a hold on it? >> yeah, i'm not filibustering. this is a national security failure of monumental proportions, and i'm not going to st
is that the pentagon signed deals before the end of the year worth about $5 billion to make sure that the money was flowing before the sequester. >> $400 billion for this one weapon program. >> that's a lot of dough. >> that is a lot of dough. the cover is "the once and future pope." rick stengel, thanks for being with us. >>> coming up next, the first pictures of olympian and double amputee sprinter oscar pistorius after he's accused of shooting and killing his girlfriend. this is a guy who was the hero of london, sort of the field-good story last summer. now he is in jail accused of murder. we're going to have the latest straight ahead on "morning joe." [ woman ] ring. ring. progresso. i just served my mother-in-law your chicken noodle soup but she loved it so much... i told her it was homemade. everyone tells a little white lie now and then. but now she wants my recipe [ clears his throat ] [ softly ] she's right behind me isn't she? [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. [ clears his throat ] by earning a degree from capella she'more iuniversity, isn't she? you'll have the
apart and obviously the optics of being out of town when there's steep cuts to the pentagon and other government programs is not great but it's really an oversimplification of the issue. >> molly, what about the plan put forth earlier this week, the $110 billion plan to avert the sequester. is that going to gain any traction? >> i doubt it. republicans have already basically said that's dead on arrival and as jake said it's not like they were getting anything done here in washington before they went on vacation. there really hasn't been any progress. there are no negotiations, nobody's talking to each other. you have these one-sided plans being put together and then they sort of get lobbed over the fence and the other side says eh, no. we're a long way from a constructive dialogue happening between the parties on capitol hill. >> jake in a piece yesterday you wrote "house republicans say if they spend the next two years like they spent the past two they'll become irrelevant." who are the most prominent republicans leading this charge toward as you put it irrelevancy? >> toward irrelev
the president for lost funding in federal programs and the pentagon over ten years, should the sequestration take place. house speaker john boehner said, quote, today the president advanced an argument republicans have been making for a year. his sequester is the wrong way to cut spending. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell insisted "more than three months after the november election, president obama still prefers campaign events to common sense, bipartisan action." and joining us now for more on this from washington, the former chief economist of the international monetary fund and bloomberg view columnist, simon johnson. he's the co-author of "white house burning: our national debt and why it matters to you," now out in paperback. simon, good to see you this morning. >> nice to be with you. >> simon, if you could help us through this over the next week or so, it doesn't look like there's a path to avoiding the sequestration if you listen to the two sides. so how damaging would this be? because we've heard a couple different versions of it that would have immediate impacts, more than 75
in discretionary. we could actually clean all the waste out of the pentagon which is well over $100 billion a year. it still doesn't solve our problem. we cannot solve our problem unless we change medicare to save it and put a competitive model into our health care system that will allocate that scarce resource. it's really interesting. just yesterday the cms has finished going through all this bidding on durable medical equipment. and the statement coming from cms, for the first time, is hey, we just figured out competition works. about a 41% savings on durable medical equipment not just for the federal government but for the seniors who are going to be doing their co-pay. so competition works. and if it will work -- it works in this area, health care will work in the rest. we've just got to have a little pain. that happened to me as a child frequently with a popular switch. >> okay. well, there you go. >> there's a bumper sticker for 2014. >> chuck, good morning. senator, good morning. chuck, quick question for you. what are the odds you place on sequester going through and two, a government shu
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